Hungary's Jobless Rate Down To 3.7%

  • 29 Jun 2018 8:26 AM
  • Hungary Matters
Hungary's Jobless Rate Down To 3.7%
Hungary’s rolling average three-month jobless rate stood at 3.7% between March and May, down from 3.8% in the previous period and down from 4.4% in the same period a year earlier, the Central Statistical Office (KSH) said.

The rate covers unemployment among those between the ages of 15 and 74. In absolute terms, there were 170,600 unemployed in Hungary in the period, 6,400 less than in February-April and 32,500 less than in the same period a year earlier.

The number of employed included 161,600 Hungarians in fostered work schemes and 107,900 people working abroad.

The number of those employed on the domestic primary labour market rose by 2.7% from a year earlier, while the number of fostered workers dropped by 20.3%. The number of those working abroad was down 2.5%.

Commenting on the data, Finance Minister Mihály Varga told public television that employment in the 15-64 age group had grown steadily since 2010. Thanks to economic growth, overall unemployment is at a historic law. Government schemes creating workplaces continue to improve jobseekers’ and job changers’ chances, he said.

The government is continuing to work on increasing the number of pensioners and women with children in employment, both through funding and by expanding possibilities of part-time employment, Varga said.

Rising costs on wages do not hamper growth but help fostered workers to enter the primary labour market, he said. The six-year wage deal concluded between the government, employees and unions at the end of 2016 also boosts wages, development and investment, he said.

ING Bank chief analyst Péter Virovácz said companies had still managed to hire people despite growing labour shortage. Rising wages are pushing some towards activity but the market is only absorbing jobseekers that have been out of work for less than a year. For the rest of the year the unemployment rate could remain around its current level, he added.

Analyst András Horváth of Takarékbank said the economy was nearing full employment as the unemployment rate could drop to around 3% by the end of summer and average 3.4% for the year.

Horváth said there was still room for a 4-5 percentage point improvement in the national employment rate which could translate into 250,000-300,000 new jobs until full employment is reached.

K&H Bank chief analyst Dávid Németh said the unemployment rate is at a low point and the 3-4% rate corresponds to full employment in the current economic environment.

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